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John Lennon - Imagine
Mobile Fidelity/Capitol Records
By MuzikMan
(more articles from this author)
2003-09-04
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Artist: John Lennon
Title: Imagine
Label: Mobile Fidelity (www.mofi.com) / Capitol Records
Genre: Rock/AOR, Hard, Pop
Format: Ultra Disc II 24 Karat Gold Disc/Original Master Recording
Release Date: 1971/2003

The legend of John Lennon as a Beatle and solo artist is common history to anyone that knows anything at all about music. The account of his personal life has made some history of its own when things were not going so well in his life. I remember when he split with Yoko and all the stories about his public displays of drunkenness and disorderly conduct filled the tabloids. Whether or not any of it was true does not matter. What was evident at that time in his life was that John was a lost soul without Yoko. One listen to "Jealous Guy" and "Crippled Inside" on his greatest solo album Imagine tells the story.

Mobile Fidelity gives this classic rendering of rock ‘n' roll the Ultra Disc II Gold Disc treatment. I had not heard this album in years, but I do remember when it came out and how it was always playing at a friend's house. The title track was such a prolific message coming from a rock star…Imagine no heaven, no possessions, no countries, and no religion too. This was John's vision of a world living on equal terms. It is unfortunate that we can only imagine a world such as this, alas it is simply not realistic in these complicated times.

To say that this album sounds better than ever is a given, it is as vital and moving today as it was when it first came out in 1971, which is an additional credit to its merit as an all time classic rock album. Lennon was a true to form icon, a real poet with a cause. His music and lyrics were soaked in the essence of emotion and spiritualism with frustration and anger coming out the other side of that. It is a wonder how he wrote all of these songs, separated, and identified all of those feelings then set it all to music.

If you look at the roster present for these sessions it comes as no surprise why this was such a inexhaustible recording filled with excellence. George Harrison, Nicky Hopkins, King Curtis, Jim Keltner, Alan White, Phil Spector…anyone that was someone in music sat in with Lennon on this album. Mobile Fidelity you have done it again, and what a great pick for the wonderful series of Original Master Recordings. The sound is as pristine and clear as a freshly fallen shod of snow and the separation of instruments in accord with Lennon's voice could not be much better than what you will hear on this disc. Great musicianship, songwriting and production, what else is there? To hear it in such near perfect form is just a knock out.

1. Imagine - 3:03
2. Crippled Inside - 3:49
3. Jealous Guy - 4:14
4. It's So Hard - 2:27
5. I Don't Wanna Be a Soldier Mama - 6:08
6. Gimme Some Truth - 3:16
7. Oh My Love - 2:45
8. How Do You Sleep? - 5:36
9. How? - 3:45
10. Oh Yoko! - 4:23

Album Credits:
George Harrison - Dobro, Guitar, Slide Guitar
John Lennon - Guitar, Harmonica, Piano, Arranger, Guitar (Electric), Keyboards, Vocals, Whistle (Human), Producer, Performer, Mouth Organ
Michael Pinder - Percussion, Tambourine
King Curtis - Saxophone
Nicky Hopkins - Piano, Keyboards, Piano (Electric), Performer
Yoko Ono - Arranger, Producer, Photography, Supervisor, Cover Design
Alan White - Percussion, Drums, Vibraphone, Tibetan Finger Cymbals
Jim Keltner - Drums
Joey Molland - Guitar (Acoustic), Guitar
Phil Spector - Producer
Jim Gordon - Drums
Andy - Guitar (Acoustic)
John Barham - Harmonium, Keyboards, Vibraphone
Steve Brendell - Bass, Maracas, Bass (Upright)
Tom Evans - Guitar
Rod Linton - Guitar (Acoustic), Guitar
John Tout - Guitar (Acoustic)
Ted Turner - Guitar (Acoustic), Guitar
Klaus Voormann - Bass, Bass (Upright)
Torrie Zito - Orchestration
Tommy Banfinger - Guitar (Acoustic)


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